Saturday, March 15, 2008

Cookies and Eggs

We had a friend's daughters birthday party last night I did the cake for...Club Penguin...ever heard of it? I hadn't....ha ha! Chaney enjoyed challenging me with freehanding a cake...ha ha!! It was fun to do and Tessa knew what it was when she saw it, which had been my concern that she would see it and say "what on earth is that?" Especially since her Mommy had made the cake a pressure...hee hee!! We enjoyed hot dogs and company and then MK spent the night. She and Tessa both had to get up and go to their separate girl scout cookie booth sales this morning though. So the morning started pretty early! The blue thing is a 'fluffle' or something like that (Penguin pets). The Penguin and edges are chocolate as Tessa's penguin was Chocolate brown (til she changed it yesterday to green...ha ha!) Check out Club Penguin to enter your own Penguin world....John Mark had his new penguin surfing today! As soon as my kids saw the Penguins they wanted to try it...we are still learning though!!

We had a great day...even with the threat of nasty weather, we still had just a super day! MaryKyle and I spent the morning & most of the afternoon at Sam's doing a 'booth sale' for her Brownie troop and enjoying lunch with some Brownie friends and their Mommies. We just about sold out of cookies...whoohoo!! So exciting for these first year Brownies!! We only had TWO boxes left....hip hip hooray!!
Now if we can only get the last 8 orders of the 207 boxes MaryKyle sold handed out....arrgghh!!! This is more work than I remember it being when I was a Brownie!!! Guess that's because Mommy gets the brunt of the hard stuff. MaryKyle did sell all of her cookies herself so we were proud of her hard work, but the work that brings on for Mommy and Daddy is just...ugh!A Sam's employee who was nice enough to buy lots of cookies!!giving a thank you note to Sam's (interestingly enough that's friends from church standing in line to come to the CS counter!)
MK and her Brownie buddies!MaryKyle and her best friend Taylor!
My Sweet Brownie

We headed home to dye easter eggs with Daddy and John Mark! We had 3 different kits filled with stickers and paints and dye, etc etc....we all had great fun and I have blue and green fingers to show for it!

Hope your Saturday was as fun as ours!!Daddy making preparations while the kids finished their showersGetting instructions

a bit of our handi-work

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Yummy butter!!

So after much discussion in the Honduras Living Group and Patty passing on this suggestion to us, we made butter today!! THANKS Patty!!
It was great. Since we already drink raw milk and have the cream on the top, we didn't have to use heavy cream. We just got the cream off the top of our milk, put it in a mason jar and SHOOK...and shook and shook and shook. After about 15 min of shaking perhaps it was kind of 'sludgy' and we added a dash of salt, sealed it back up and shook...and shook and shook and shook. What a work out! but now we have our own little bit of freshly made butter!! WHOO HOO!! We had fun and thought it was so cool to watch the different stages! We'll make more next time and we want to try cheeses too.That's my neighbor's precious little one in the background enjoying the fun!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Lesson Planning

I've been struggling to engage John Mark. He'll get his work done, but just doesn't get excited about anything. He does great and does his schoolwork, just not with any excitement and craving for learning. MaryKyle is easy to engage...a new book is all it takes. She loves reading, of any kind. She also loves to learn interesting bizarre facts. But John Mark goes through the motions without really getting into anything. So I decided to sit down and ask him what he'd be interested in reading and learning about. He really thought hard about it and I'm so excited about the results and he liked that I asked him. I decided to go on and ask MaryKyle too. Now I've got some fun things to look for books on, and put lessons together based on. I'm hoping this will truly engage John Mark especially and give him something to WANT to read. His reading skills are improving so very much, but I figure books that he REALLY wants to read and is interested in can help that immensely! Whoohoo!! So here are the things on their lists as they said them

JOHN MARK: Superman/Batman books, Frogs, Grasshoppers - bug project/collection, Skateboarding/tricks, History/Wars, Space, Science Experiments

MARYKYLE: Pirates (black Beard, William Walker, etc), Dinosaur bones, Science Experiments, Cooking (read and follow a recipe), Life Underground (bugs and animals, etc)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

School in the Corner

We got up early to take the 5 boys from the Harding Chorus that stayed with us last night to the church building to get on the bus. So the kids had some free time while Mommy rested a bit after a late night watching a Spades game and getting everyone settled, then up at 6am to make b'fast before they headed out. The kids built a fort in the Family room. So for reading time they added a lamp and headed into the fort with their books. They were so content. Schooling in a more unconventional way works well for us most days. They will head to their desks to write a report on what they read later, but for now school in the corner works well!The Fort from the outside

John Mark chose to read the Bible story of Jonathan and David
MaryKyle chose to complete Mary Poppins Comes Back

I let them choose their books to read today. They were told they had to read one they could complete today and write a report about. John Mark is work on his brainstorming as I type this. MK is still working on finishing her book, but she will as she is on the last chapters. She LOVES this Mary Poppins Series...who knew there was several books in the series?? I didn't! Thanks GrandMama!!! She was reading a part of it the other night to a little girl that spent the night with her. Daddy and I were standing outside the room listening & cracking up at all her voices and English accents she did for each character. I will have to try to get it on tape some time!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

We get by with a little help from our friends!!

Most of us have those friends. You know the ones you feel like are more like family. The ones that you don't have to talk to all the time, perhaps go months or longer without catching up. But the ones that you KNOW you can call ANY time for ANY thing, and be nothing but yourselves!!
The Walkers are those kind of friends for us. We met them back when we were all newlyweds and had just moved to the same little town outside Chattanooga. We worshiped there together for a couple years. We've all since moved, but still enjoy opportunities to get together every once in a while.
We appreciate so much their friendship and for opening their beautiful new home to us so we could escape our too quiet home this weekend and just try to get away and forget about the stress of the past few weeks and months. They were even sweet enough to share their treasured Yankee Scrapple with us! YUMMY!! Thanks Walkers, we had a wonderful time!!!

The kids had a ball on the their first 4-wheeler rides
Mommy didn't have a heart attack. HOORAY!!

planning their play
implementing the playwaiting as patiently as she can to take another ride!!keeping the gorgeous Brinks from eating us!! THANKS!

John Mark is already planning on crashing their pool this summer!
I think he likes their's better than ours!? Can't say I blame him - the mountains are a much better setting then the city!